A complete guide to what to do in Koblenz (+ a map with the most popular attractions and the best restaurants).
Located at the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle Rivers, Koblenz has a very strategic position. It’s no wonder why Romans chose it to build a military fortification around 8 BC.
During the Middle Ages, the city was the main point for controlling the trade both on the Rhine and Moselle Rivers.
Is Koblenz worth visiting
It may seem a small city, but Koblenz has a lot to offer. And it’s not only picturesque squares and beautiful churches. An 11th-century old fortress reveals spectacular views of the city and the two rivers. Plus, there are several huge shopping malls.
The city is also a great base to explore the Rhine River castles and the Moselle with its dreamy villages and vineyards.
For more details take a look at my guide to the best Rhine River castles. It covers the most famous castles along the Rhine (including how to get there by train and bus).
Planning to spend a day in Cologne, too? Then check out my complete itinerary for one day in Cologne.
What to do in Koblenz in one day
This Koblenz itinerary is perfect for all visitors, who want to see the best of the city in less than a day. At the end of the article, you’ll find a map of the itinerary (with all attractions and restaurants’ websites).
Looking for more options? Then check out my guide to the best Koblenz hotels in Old Town.
What to do in Koblenz in one day
- Start the day with breakfast at Ulrikes Kulturbackhaus
- German Corner
- Ride the Cable Car
- Visit the Ehrenbreitstein Fortress
- Try the best burgers in Koblenz
- Admire the History Column
- Visit the Basilica of St. Castor
- Stroll in the gardens of Electoral Palace
Try some German pastries
08:30 AM – 09:30 AM
Start the day with a tasty breakfast at Bäckerei Hoefer or Ulrikes Kulturbackhaus. I loved the Nougat Brezel at Bäckerei Hoefer and the nut cake at Ulrikes Kulturbackhaus.
09:30 AM – 10:00 AM
Deutsches Eck is probably the most popular place in Koblenz. Here, the Moselle River joins the Rhine under the sight of William I, the first German Emperor. His monumental statue is right on the headland.
The place is named after the Teutonic Order (Deutscher Orden). The Teutonic Knights settled in the area during the 13th century. They founded a commandery here that became the administrative seat of the city.
Ride the Cable Car
The cable car (Seilbahn) is the easiest way to get to the Ehrenbreitstein Fortress. To save money buy the combined ticket for the cable car and the fortress. And if you’re lucky you’ll travel in cabin 17 that has a glass plate on the floor.
Visit the Ehrenbreitstein Fortress
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Ehrenbert Conradine commissioned the construction of the fortress in the 11th century. In the following years, it changed several owners who expanded the complex.
Festung Ehrenbreitstein seemed to be impregnable until the French troops sieged it in 1797 and later blew it up. In the 19th century, King Friedrich Wilhelm III turned Koblenz into a fortified city and the fortress became a strategic military post.
The ticket gives you access to several museums and large outdoor spaces featuring spectacular views of the city. However most of the descriptions are in German, so you’d better get the audio guide.
Try the best burgers in Koblenz
12:30 PM – 02:30 PM
Stop for lunch at Hans im Glück (the best burgers in town). They also offer great vegetarian burgers (one of the best I’ve tried).
Just right next to the Church of Our Lady, you’ll find a little ice-cream shop, eGeLoSia. There is always a waiting line, so you can’t miss it. Their pistachio and forest fruits ice cream is to die for.
Admire the History Column
02:30 PM – 02:45 PM
The column (Historiensäule) recounts the city’s history from Roman times until the present days in a unique way.
Basilica of St. Castor
03:00 PM – 03:30 PM
Consecrated in 836, this is the oldest surviving church in the city. During the Middle Ages, Kastorkirche was a special place of worship for emperors and kings.
Take a look at my recommendations further below and choose according to your interests.
Dinner at Altes Brauhaus
Finish the day with dinner at Altes Brauhaus. They offer traditional German food (try their spare ribs or the Schnitzel).
More ideas for your 1 day in Koblenz
Prussian Government Building
Preussisches Regierungsgebäude was the seat of the former Prussian government for the Rhine region. It was constructed from 1902 to 1906 in Neo-romantic style. Unfortunately, it’s not open to visitors.
The 19th-century palace served as a residence of the last Archbishop and Elector of Trier, Clemens Wenceslaus of Saxony. Later, the Prussian Crown Prince governed the Rhine Province and the Province of Westphalia from there.
Nowadays, Kurfürstliches Schloss isn’t open for visitors as it houses various offices of the government. Yet, you can stroll through the lovely gardens.
This former electoral water castle dates back to the 13th century. Nowadays, Alte Burg houses the city archives and it’s not open to visitors.
Church of Our Lady
With origins that date back to the 5th century AD, Liebfrauenkirche is the main parish church in Koblenz. During the centuries the church was rebuilt and extended repeatedly. The current building with its onion domes is from around the 17th century.
Church of the Sacred Heart
Church of the Sacred Heart (Herz-Jesu-Kirche) is the most impressive Neo-Romanesque building in the area. The church was consecrated in 1904 and completely burnt down only 40 years later during WWII. It was rebuilt again in post-war times.
I stumbled upon this funny fountain by accident. It represents Noah’s Ark and the technical inventors of the region.
Getting around in Koblenz
Find a detailed map of this itinerary here.
The Old Town, where all the tourist attractions are, is small and walkable. However, to get to Ehrenbreitstein Fortress, you’ll need to take the cable car.
Another option is to use the ferry boat, but it’s definitely more fun taking the cable car. Plus, the views are spectacular.
How to get to Koblenz
The Central train station is about a 10min walk from the historic city centre. If you’re arriving by train, it will be more convenient to get off at Koblenz Stadtmitte station. This station is right next to the historic centre.
Check timetables and book tickets online at Deutsche Bahn official site.
The closest airports to the city are Frankfurt-Hahn Airport, Frankfurt am Main Airport and Cologne Bonn Airport.
Frankfurt-Hahn Airport is the closest one to Koblenz. There is a direct connection between the airport and the city (just take the airport ExpressBus 615).
Cologne Bonn Airport
Cologne Bonn Airport is located about 110km away. Although it’s not close, there is a railway connection right from the airport to Koblenz. The journey is about 1h30min and you have to change trains at Köln Hbf.
Frankfurt am Main Airport
Frankfurt am Main Airport is not near, too. Yet, you can easily reach Koblenz by train directly from the airport (2 hours journey).
How many days in Koblenz
One day in Koblenz is more than enough to visit the Ehrenbreitstein Fortress and explore the German Corner. These are the most popular attractions. Koblenz is a great option for a day trip from Cologne.
However, if you plan to use Koblenz as a base to explore the castles along the Rhine and Moselle Rivers, dedicate 3-4 days.
Best time to visit Koblenz
The best time to visit Koblenz is the months from May to September. The weather is sunny and warm, perfect for a cruise along the Rhine River.
If you’re visiting the city at the beginning of June, don’t miss the Bierbörse. It’s a popular beer festival where you can find different local and exotic beers. It’s heaven for every beer lover (see the next Bierbörse event dates here).